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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Stands for Smackerels

In preparation for creating my dream dessert buffet, I began collecting pieces from garage sales and thrift stores. I didn't really know what I was going for, so at first the pieces seemed pretty random. A few glass things here, a ceramic piece there. My Papa also gave me a beautiful glass cake plate that my Nana adored. The jumbled collection kept growing without a clear vision, until I saw these two pictures on Pinterest:
Cake Stands from Centsational Girl & Bottles from Tip Junkie via Beach House in the City
The cake stand picture is a tutorial on how to create your own cake plates out of just about anything from the thrift store. In this case, two plates, a wine glass and a martini glass. Add some spray paint and you've got functional and cute dessert plates. I wanted something a bit softer though, while the DIY aspect was simple enough, the full on spray paint didn't make me swoon. THEN, the tutorial on how to make your own milk glass popped up. Those bottles are so perfect looking, they are in fact softer than the bold colors of the pink and orange stands. So, I molded the two tutorials together and made myself some dessert plates.

My collection consisted of mainly glass, so that's why the DIY milk glass appealed to me. Over Labor Day weekend I dug out my collection, gave them all a good wash and let them air dry while I hit up Wally World for the spray paint. I also purchased two small glass plates from the thrift store to do a sample run, just to make sure my idea would in fact work.

After my plates were all dry, I used some painters tape and taped the edges of the plates; the one thing I learned with those two practice plates was that the spray paint drips down to the edge of the plate and creates a sticky, unfinished mess while drying. For this project, I was only spray painting the bottom of the plate. I taped off the edge, so that when I set the plate down (bottom up) the rim would be setting on the tape, therefor avoiding the sticky mess on the glass. 
Taped Edges, Ready for Spray Paint
The second step is important. Because most spray paint is not actually intended for glass, you either need to use a primer or in my case, the Frosted Glass Spray Paint. I didn't get a picture of the can, but it's in with all the regular spray paint. This creates something for the normal spray paint to adhere to. The frosted paint takes about ten minutes to dry. Depending on the condition of your plates, you may or may not need an additional coat. A couple of mine did need two coats, while a couple were good with one. If it looked splotchy or uneven, I went ahead and did a second layer of frost. 
Looking Frosty!
Next up, spray paint with your chosen color. I used navy blue and gray. I'm NOT a good spray painter, but my best advice is to use quick sprays from a good distance away. Usually I end up with spots, drips and bubbles but I must say I rocked this spray paint project. Lastly, LET THEM DRY for A LONG TIME. The can says ten minutes, it's a lie. I let mine dry for a good twenty-four hours, until they weren't sticky feeling anymore. I even had to do another coat on the navy blue and let it dry another day. This is the most tedious part of the process, I had to refrain from picking the things up multiple times because they still felt like spray paint.

For the bases, I scored one day at the thrift store and got six candlestick holders, all ceramic and all in white. Not that it really mattered, because they too would be spray painted. This process was pretty basic: spray paint, dry, turnover, spray paint to cover missed spots, dry, and spray paint once more for good measure. And dry. 
From white to blue and gray
A couple of things to note before I enlist your help, Hive. In the tutorial from Centsational Girl, she uses silicon to attach the base to the plate and advises to do so before painting. I didn't do that because, a) that was too risky for me and b) these will more than likely be a one time use, so I won't be using/washing them every time I host a dinner party. I think (and hope) super glue will do the trick for me. Second, she also uses doilies to display her food, but because I only spray painted the bottom of the plates, the food will not come into contact with the paint. If you spray paint the bottom AND top of a serving dish, make sure to not poison your guests, and put the food on something before you serve it. The last of my PSA for making your own dessert plates, is that it's hard to tell what flaws the plates may have until after you spray paint. It seems that the spray paint magnifies the tiniest of knife cuts...they are much more apparent in the light, when held up to a window, and will hopefully be less noticeable in a darker building with treats on them. See?

See how the middle plate looks a little scuffed, it may be my lack in photography skills as well.
This gray plate turned out just about perfect; thick color but it looks creamy beneath the layer of glass:

I have a few other plates in the arsenal, but right now, I'm trying to decide how to match these ones. Blue on Blue and Gray on Gray OR Blue on Gray and Gray on Blue?! Decisions, decisions. 
Blue on Blue, Gray on Gray

Gray on Blue, Blue on Gray
One more for good measure (hey, I'm proud!), a shot of all of them:
So, Hive, which do you like best?
Option A: Blue on Blue and Gray on Gray
Option B: Gray on Blue and Blue on Gray
Option C: Just mix 'Em All!

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